We had an overflow crowd at the First White House today, to commemorate Robert E. Lee’s 205th birthday and enjoy Bob Bradley’s excellent speech about him, as well as awesome birthday cake. Here are some facts you may not know about Robert Edward Lee:
Did you know? Robert E. Lee was the 5th child born to “Light-Horse Harry Lee”, who fought in the Revolutionary War, & Ann Carter Hill Lee
He graduated 2nd in his class at West Point and was the only cadet that graduated with no demerits,
He married Mary Randolph Custis who was the great-granddaughter of Martha Washington
He was the father of 7 children. All of his sons served in the Confederate Army.
He was offered the command of the Union army but turned it down, because Virginia seceded.
He later became General of the Army of Virginia and following that the Commander of the Regular Army of the Confederate States.
He returned to Virginia after the war and planned to pursue a quiet country life.
Instead, he was offered and accepted the position as President of Washington College.
The President’s house had an apartment built on the back that had been previously occupied by Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson and his first wife, prior to her untimely death.
Lee now occupied the house once lived in by his “greatest general”, who lay buried less than a mile from the house..
Discipline at Washington College under Lee was swift and certain.
The enrollment immediately increased from 40 to 140 students and within a year, to 300 students.
Money was raised, over $100,00 during Lee’s first year there.
After his death the college changed its name to Washington and Lee University, the ultimate tribute to this noble and great Christian gentleman.